Inside Panama’s Biomuseo
On the Isthmus of Panama—the narrow land bridge that connects North and South America—a striking new museum has opened its doors after nearly a decade of construction.
Designed by famed architect Frank Gehry, the Biomuseo (@biomuseo) celebrates the key role the isthmus played in the biodiversity of the planet, enabling species to migrate between the continents after it formed some three million years ago. More than 4,000 square meters (43,056 square feet) of gallery space host an immersive theater, interactive exhibitions and a series of larger-than-life models of prehistoric species.
The unique design of the structure takes its inspiration from the surrounding environment. The signature overlapping steel plates that make up the roof take their bright color scheme from the coloration of species native to the tropical region, and the building’s largely open-air floor plan reflects the tradition of local structures designed to cope with the warm climate in natural ways.
For Panama graphic designer and art director Raul Correa (@rauloo), the architecture and exhibitions come together to create a memorable experience. “The museum is a very photogenic and artistic place,” he explains. “The first time I visited, it was like being transported into a story—and I could understand how the Isthmus of Panama completely changed the world. It’s a fascinating story.”